After a brief and courageous battle with pancreatic cancer, Craig Fotheringham passed peacefully on Sunday, January 8, 2012 at the age of 58.
He was predeceased by his father, Douglas and leaves to cherish his memory his mother, Rena; daughter, Kathleen and her husband, Chris, son, Jordan, stepdaughters, Leah and Joanna, brother, Jim and nieces, Tara and Alannah.
Craig grew up in Dryden, Ontario. His mother, Rena started teaching him how to play the piano at age five and he excelled, passing his grade five exam with honours at the age of ten.
He then took a break from piano and taught himself how to play the guitar. Craig and his friends, Guenther, Richard and Dale started a band called The Shades of Blue and earned beer money playing at local dances.
Craig remained close friends with his band mates and in 2000 The Shades of Blue reunited and played for three more local dances.
Craig was also an avid hockey player who won numerous MVP awards. He went to Victoria, BC to try out for junior hockey but came home to pursue a career in music. In 1972, Craig moved to Winnipeg to study classical piano and stayed. Throughout his musical career, Craig performed with and produced albums for various artists and bands, most notably the C-Weed Band, The Foster Martin Band, Curtis Newton and the Bill McMahon Trio. Craig’s work spanned genres from Country to Hip Hop but his true passion was jazz. He was fortunate to spend his last few years sharing his love of jazz at various venues throughout the city including the Pemby on Saturday afternoons. Craig played his last gig at the Winnipeg Art Gallery with Curtis Newton on December 2, 2011.
Many local musicians credit Craig for mentoring them and making them better musicians. Craig also had a love and talent for photography. He was designated the official photographer at family functions, took photos for musical albums he produced and took beautiful travel photos.
Craig was a devoted father who took an active interest in his children’s musical, academic and athletic endeavours. He was also a very loving son, who was always there for his mother whether she needed help with a computer issue, painting the cottage or just someone to talk to. Craig was fortunate to spend his last weeks at home with his mother, Rena and to have the love and support of family and friends, especially Christine Skene, Darlene Furlong, Lyle Foster and Stella Davies.
The family would like to extend their gratitude to his doctors and nurses at Cancer Care, his palliative home care nurses as well as the dedicated staff at the St. Boniface Palliative Care Unit. Your care and compassion made this difficult time much easier to bear.
Memorial services were held on January 14, 2012, at 2:00 p.m. at the St. Andrew’s River Heights United Church in Winnipeg and will be held January 21, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. at the United Church in Dryden, ON. A musical celebration of Craig’s life was held on January 15, 2012 from 7:00 p.m. to midnight at the Pembina Hotel.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Canada Foundation.
Wiebe Funeral Homes Ltd., Winkler in care of arrangements, (204) 325-4201.